Christopher Mead has a piece up over at New Geography that looks at the role of local chambers of commerce in the progressive era. At the birth of the blue social model, much of the impetus for key progressive reforms came from these associations of mostly local, mostly small businesses. This comes from research he has been doing on a vital subject the conventional historians of our time resolutely ignore: the role of business and associations of businessmen in American history.Via Meadia will be returning to the subject of business and the progressive era as we continue our look at the ongoing restructuring of American society as the blue model breaks down. We expect that once again associations of American businesses, like the local chambers of commerce (not the same thing as the US Chamber), will play a major role in pushing local reform and development beyond progressive ideas. Historically, local chambers of commerce have been perhaps the single most significant force spreading best practices and new ideas across the country. Virtually all conventional historians ignore this — much to the impoverishment of our knowledge of how America actually works.Chris Mead, by the way, is yet another scion of the Venerable Mead and the Grand Matriarch and we are glad to see him up on the web. We expect this is not his last post.